The destructive emerald ash borer has been discovered for the first time in Whiteside County. It's the closest find to date in Illinois to the Iowa border.
The Illinois Department of Agriculture received confirmation that a beetle collected on the county fairgrounds in Morrison is an emerald ash borer (EAB). An alert forestry technician with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources spotted a distressed ash tree on the property.
According to a release from the Department of Agriculture, the emerald ash borer is a small, metallic-green beetle native to Asia. Its larvae burrow into the bark of ash trees, causing the trees to starve and eventually die. Since the first detection of the pest near Detroit, Mich., in 2002, it has killed more than 25 million ash trees.
Forty-one Illinois counties currently are under quarantine to prevent the artificial or “human-assisted” spread of the beetle through the movement of infested wood and nursery stock.
The counties under quarantine are Boone, Bureau, Champaign, Clark, Coles, Cook, Cumberland, DeKalb, DeWitt, Douglas, DuPage, Edgar, Effingham, Fayette, Ford, Grundy, Henry, Iroquois, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Knox, Lake, LaSalle, Lee, Livingston, Macon, Marion, Marshall, McHenry, McLean, Moultrie, Ogle, Piatt, Putnam, Shelby, Stark, Vermilion, Will, Winnebago and Woodford.